“Why do I have to follow the rules you make?” E asked. I explained to him that we all need to do our part to survive and to live well. E’s question reminded me of S. S once asked me, ”Why do I have to follow what you decide to be the rule?”
If a decision is made from a consequence-based (practicality) reasoning (such as if E doesn’t go to school, he won’t be able to survive in the world), then the decision of not going to school can also be justified because it’s possible for someone to survive in the world without any education. If a decision is based on morality or social obligation, then the rule is still uncertain because everyone has different feelings of moral obligation.
It’s a very challenging question. Freedom does not come easy, we are supported by many people to be able to live in an environment like this. People in India don’t have clean water to live with. “Why not?” he asked. Maybe it’s because they believe in a system where clean water doesn’t matter, or that’s how I imagined.
I just want him to understand that what we have doesn’t come from nothing, and we are very lucky. With this knowledge, he can choose what to do with his life, when there are also laws created to ensure fairness for everyone to preserve his/her right to equality.
What is necessary for the self and the society to grow? Maybe the question is a goal oriented problem. The question is not entirely based on morality, nor is it based on utility, but about the “direction” of living. It is the goal of all humanity to live well in the sense of being a better human, so a possible answer might be based on the goal. So, what does being a better human means?